COLLEGE PARK -- As days go, yesterday is one that the Loyola women's basketball team would just as soon forget.
The Greyhounds rose at 5 a.m., did a quick shoot-around, then boarded a bus for Philadelphia to join their coach, Pat Coyle, at her father's funeral.
They then traveled here last night and dropped a 73-38 decision to Maryland, to bring a long day to an end.
"We asked our team to do a lot of things today. It was a long day both emotionally and physically," said assistant coach Cindy Anderson, who sat in for Coyle during the post-game interview session.
The youthful Greyhounds (5-7) may not have had enough speed and athleticism to stay with a Maryland team that was looking to extract a measure of revenge for last year's 73-68 loss -- the first-ever to an in-state opponent -- but the extra emotional and physical baggage didn't help matters, either.
"It was kind of tough," said junior forward Lynn Albert. "We haven't had Coach Coyle in practice for a couple days, but the assistant coaches did a really good job in preparing us. It's great to have Coach Coyle back."
The Terps (8-6) overwhelmed Loyola with their superior team speed and strength, cutting off the passing lanes to force interceptions, then turning the Greyhounds' turnovers, 37 in total, into scores on the other end.
"The defense is getting better and better and that will be our trademark all year," said Maryland coach Chris Weller.
Five Maryland players scored in double figures, led by sophomore forward Stephanie Cross with 14.
Sophomore Sonia Chase (McDonogh) had 13 points, six assists and four steals. She leads the Atlantic Coast Conference in thefts and is 13th nationally with an average of four per game.
"I'm just concentrating on the defensive concept of staying toward the ball, and if I can't get the steal, then I concentrate on playing good defense on my man," said Chase.
The Terps, who face ACC leader North Carolina on Sunday night, ripped out to a 23-2 advantage in the first 10 minutes, forcing Loyola into turnovers on eight straight possessions.
"They definitely had us circled on their calendar, but we were prepared for them," said Albert. "It's the same team as last year, but they're more physical. They gave us what we expected."
The Greyhounds return to Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference play with a home game against Canisius on Friday night.